Slept well until the rain woke me up at 5a.m. It was still raining at 7a.m., only harder - if I stay at a hostel on the edge of Dartmoor I shouldn't be too surprised. I also need to confess I stole some Rice Krispies - they were in a ice-cream tub with a girl's name on it near the 'spare food' pile. It was only when the Warden said a lady was booked in for 4 nights that the penny dropped - if you are the Warden (or the lady with only 3 breakfasts) reading this, SORRY.
Having brought 20kg of kit I am determined to use it. Yesterday I tucked my 'waterproof' overtrousers into my 'wet suit' cycling over-shoes, to stop them catching the chain. The problem was that all the trouser run-off went straight into my shoes, today I sealed the trousers with Duck Tape - it worked a treat and for the next 3 hours the heavy rain was not channelled into my shoes. Result.
Turning off the old A30 I headed for Crediton, you could tell it was Devon as the rivers down the side of the road were red.
I avoided the long and pointless climb to Crediton but decided to play with my useless back brake at the station - what a superb surprise to find a real old-fashioned buffet - time for coffee and a bacon sandwich.
When I reappeared the rain had stopped and it was sunny, I donned shorts CORD T-shirt and customised hi-vis vest and headed off. Tiverton came and went and I joined the Grand Western Canal and flew along, missing a turn-off so making a very tedious 1 mile in the wrong direction (see the accompanying plot), it was only the headwind (still a westerly) that alerted me to my mistake.
With my back brake still not really working I Googled 'bike shops Taunton' to find the Bicycle Chain in Chip Lane had the necessary part, only 16 miles away. Off I pedalled.
In it's heyday this striking canal reached Taunton but today it ends at a tunnel, my GPS (co-pilot) was a giveaway as there was a VERY large hill ahead. At least the sun was still out and newly drenched Devon countryside was stunning.
Sneeked into Someset on a road with no sign, must get a photo on the way out.
Phone battery ran out, hence the jump in the track, texted Logistical Support (wonderful Chris) to send spare MP3 player to Bristol, so I can load music on that and solely use phone for photos, txts, track uploads and internet - how did Shackelton manage?
At Nynehead some locals had been exeedingly busy digging a huge vertical sided cutting through the Old Red Sandstone.
Bicycle Chain had the parts and I used 2 more items from my 20kg of luggage (leatherman and alum keys).
The Bridewater and Taunton Canal did what it said on the tin and in the afternoon sunshine I chased my lengthening shadow whilst trains to Penzance raced past.
The Admiral's Rest (not sure which one) B&B was well equiped for cyclists, I washed off the Trek and gave it a liberal lubrication before I did likewise in a bath and the pub. Funny town Bridgewater but has all the essentials I need. I'm sure the two old guys on my right are Archers extras - background noise in the Bull.
So another day over, in total 21.4, 43.2, 63.4, 66.4 and a whopping 80.6 today, so that makes it 274 miles so far, not bad really.
21.50, off to bed..
Oh by the way I have over 40 regular followers, including Finland and South Africa - you know who you are...
80.6 miles, 7:17 moving, max speed 27.7 mph, avg speed 11.9 mph, height climbed 5,715 ft